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Prions: Current Papers?

burris at myna.com burris at myna.com
Thu Feb 15 03:06:28 EST 1996

Does anyone know of any recent journal article titles concerning prion research and their implication in CJD, Kuru, scrapie or 
other diseases?

Some Questions to Ponder:

Evidence suggests that prions do not contain nucleic acid since there is a concomitant loss of infectiousness with nuclease 
treatment. If true, what evidence exists to confirm or refute the protein, glycoprotein or lipoprotein based nature of the agent?

If prions are solely based on protein, glycoprotein or lipoprotein, or any combuination there of, shouldn't a lability
or alteration in the 3-D conformation of the agent's protein based structure be expected when the agent is exposed to heat? 
Would not protease treatment also be expected to affect the infectiousness of the agent? Some reports suggest that heat and 
protease treatment does not reduce or eliminate the infective nature of the agent. How can this be explained based on the 
above hypothesis?

If prion replication is accomplished by the reverse translation of protein to mRNA shouldn't we be able to detect prion associated 
mRNA in infected neurological tissue? What evidence suggests that reverse translation of protein is the actual mode of 
replication used by prions? 

I welcome your comments and ideas.

Burris Ormsby, Professor Microbiology, Sheridan College, Canada

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